Can you say “indulgent?” I knew you could!
Apparently I’m not the brightest bulb in the pack, because I made the mistake of walking the dogs through my south Fisher Farms neighborhood yet again. And sure enough, just when I thought that my fellow Genevans can do nothing to surprise me, they did just that.
On a sunny, 61 degree last week morning, parents were driving their middle-school children to the bus stop. Not to school, mind you – to the bus stop! Then, this morning I noticed they were dropping their ill-mannered progeny off at the south Heartland Elementary school paved path entrance.
And when I say “parents,” I mean at least ten to fifteen of ‘em.
That daunting 2.5 block walk must be too much for their delicate flowers, so why not abandon all pretense and buy them one of those electric scooters so they don’t get winded walking around the house.
Is it any wonder we’re facing a childhood obesity epidemic?
But don’t say the word “oppressed!”
In my earlier column on white people acting gangster, I may have mentioned that, with the exception of the Geneva Police, I wasn’t all that oppressed. And that’s just one of the many reasons it’s not appropriate for me to appropriate black culture.
Ah! But the fascinating result of that eminently satirical statement was to have the GPD drive slowly through my cul-de-sac a number of times the next day. The irony there is, I couldn’t get them to do that the week after my pickup truck was torched.
Why, one of the officers even took the time to glare at me as I was getting the riding mower ready for the season.
Shortly after writing my first 2006 column for the Tri-Cities Suns, former Kane County public defender and former Geneva resident, Sandi Byrd, warned me that the Geneva Police would not take kindly to any criticism of themselves or their city. And I thought she was just being paranoid. Silly me!
On the bright side, it’s good to know someone’s reading my stuff!
Keep them on a leash!
Since we’re already on the Geneva subject! And I mean dogs, by the way, though it might not be a bad idea to apply the same principle to your children.
When I got back from my four mile Sunday run, I abruptly realized that I hadn’t run into a single unrestrained hound. Who says there’s no such thing as miracles? Perhaps I should look into a Powerball purchase because I typically run into two to four of ’em.
On a good day, I’ll simply stop and wait while the owner re-assumes control of their errant canine. It’s not the end of the world, but if I’ve gotten into a good rhythm, it’s annoying to have to start over.
On a bad day, the incoming beast will send my terrified dog into a 180 degree five-foot flight and, constrained by her leash, I’m thrown completely off-balance only to be taken out by a perfect doggie chop block.
That’s happened twice in the last two years. Who needs two good knees anyway?
The bizarre thing is, if you politely inform these west siders that those pesky leash laws tend to prevent this kind of thing, they don’t take it too well.
In one case, a veterinarian – yes! A veterinarian – got rather terse with me for getting between his 90 lb. and my 40 lb. dog. When I didn’t find his attitude particularly amusing and started dialing 911, he started screaming at me to throw down the phone and fight.
Normally, I’d be happy to accommodate someone’s insistence on an ass-kicking, but not in Geneva for all the reasons we covered in our second story.
But my favorite off-leash dog story is the 60 pounder who ran right through me to get at my dog. Trust me! The Bears could use this creature. Thankfully, it happened on a grassy, gravel path so I survived, but my favorite Steve Prefontaine t-shirt has never recovered.
And the woman didn’t even bother to have a leash with her, so her dog kept coming at mine even after I got back up.
When I threatened to call 911 if I ever saw her dog running free again, she went back to her car, followed me, and did three Bricher Road drive bys complete with yelling, swearing, and bird flipping.
It’s not that some of what she said wasn’t true, but we’d only just met so how would she know? I finally had to call the police to put an end to it, though I did decline to press charges.
Wouldn’t life be a lot easier if y’all just kept your dogs tethered? Sadly, I’m going to have to insist on it going forward.